R is for Room 222, Rhoda, The Rifleman, The Rockford Files, The Rookies and Rocky & Bullwinkle #atozchallenge

R

STATEMENT THAT APPEARS AT THE BEGINNING OF ALL A-Z 2016 PAGES:

Welcome to the A-Z Classic TV Shows Theme Songs and Intros! Last year I did an A-Z Musical Tour of My Life and featured tons of classic rock music. I had so much fun with it that this year I decided to present classic television shows theme songs and intros. These are shows that I remember from my youth during the 60s and 70s…with an occasional 80s show thrown in. Each show is introduced with information (gathered primarily from my favorite go-to for info, Wikipedia) or associated memories, followed by a video of the TV show’s theme song intro. At first glance, the posts may seem long because of the number of videos included but it’s really laid out in a way that will enable you to scroll through and read, watch or hear just what you want and then either move on to the next A-Zer or linger and go back in time with all the fun theme song intros you’ll find here. Please leave a comment and share your favorite classic TV shows. By all means, bookmark my blog so you can come back! I hope you enjoy my collection. Now, let’s get started with…

R is for Room 222: I used to love this show! It’s not running in syndication. Sometimes I wish they’d bring some of these old shows back.

Room 222 was an American comedy-drama television series produced by 20th Century Fox Television that aired on ABC for 112 episodes from September 17, 1969, until January 11, 1974. The show was broadcast on Wednesday evenings at 9 (EST) for its first two seasons before settling into its best-remembered time slot of Friday evenings at 9, following The Brady Bunch and The Partridge Family, and preceding The Odd Couple and Love, American Style.

In 1970 Room 222 earned Emmy Awards in three categories: Outstanding New Series, Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series (Michael Constantine), and Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series (Karen Valentine).

The series focused on an American history class at the fictional Walt Whitman High School in Los Angeles, California, although it also depicted other events at the school. Located in Room 222, the class was taught by Pete Dixon (Lloyd Haynes), an idealistic African American schoolteacher. Other characters featured in the show were the school’s compassionate guidance counselor, Liz McIntyre (Denise Nicholas), who was also Pete’s girlfriend; the dryly humorous school principal, Seymour Kaufman (Michael Constantine); and the petite and enthusiastic Alice Johnson (Karen Valentine), a student teacher. Also shown was Patsy Garrett as Mr. Kaufman’s secretary, Miss Hogarth. In addition, many recurring students were featured from episode to episode.

Pete Dixon delivered gentle lessons to his students in tolerance and understanding. Students admired his wisdom, insight, and easygoing manner. The themes of the episodes were sometimes topical, reflecting the current political climate (the late 1960s and early to mid-1970s such as the Vietnam War, women’s rights, race relations, and Watergate). However, most plots were timeless and featured themes still common to modern-day teenagers. For example, the 1971 episode titled “What Is a Man?” deals with a student who is the victim of anti-gay harassment and the 1974 episode titled “I Didn’t Raise My Girl to Be a Soldier” deals with parent–teenager issues.

The show featured many actors who went on to become major stars, such as Bruno Kirby, Bernie Kopell, Cindy Williams, Teri Garr, Jamie Farr, Rob Reiner, Anthony Geary, Richard Dreyfuss, Chuck Norris, Kurt Russell, and Mark Hamill. In addition, former child stars David Bailey, Ricky Kelman, Flip Mark, and Michael Shea each made appearances on the series late in their respective careers.

 

 

 

R is for Rhoda:

Rhoda is an American sitcom starring Valerie Harper which aired a total of 109 half-hour episodes over five seasons, from 1974 to 1978.[1] The show was a spin-off of The Mary Tyler Moore Show, in which Harper between the years 1970 and 1974 had played the role of Rhoda Morgenstern, a spunky, weight-conscious, flamboyantly fashioned Jewish neighbor and native New Yorker in the role of Mary Richards’ best friend. After four seasons, Rhoda left Minneapolis and returned to her original hometown of New York City. The series is noted for breaking two television records, and was the winner of two Golden Globes and two Emmy Awards.

Rhoda was filmed Friday evenings in front of a live studio audience at CBS Studio Center, Stage 14 in Studio City, Los Angeles, California.

Emmy Awards:

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series—Valerie Harper, 1975

Outstanding Continuing Performance by a Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series—Julie Kavner, 1978

Golden Globe Awards:

Best TV Show, Musical/Comedy—1975

Best TV Actress, Musical/Comedy—Valerie Harper, 1975

Collectively, Rhoda garnered a total of 17 Emmy nominations and 7 Golden Globe nominations.

Season 1 Intro Theme:

Season 2 Intro Theme Song:

 

 

R is for the Rifleman:

The Rifleman is an American Western television program starring Chuck Connors as rancher Lucas McCain and Johnny Crawford as his son, Mark McCain. It was set in the 1870s and 1880s in the town of North Fork, New Mexico Territory. The show was filmed in black-and-white, half-hour episodes. The Rifleman aired on ABC from September 30, 1958, to April 8, 1963, as a production of Four Star Television. It was one of the first prime time series on American television to show a widowed parent raising a child.

 "Chuck Connors Johnny Crawford The Rifleman 1960" by ABC Television - Licensed under Public Domain via Commons.

“Chuck Connors Johnny Crawford The Rifleman 1960” by ABC Television – Licensed under Public Domain via Commons.

The series centers on Lucas McCain, a widowed Union Civil War veteran. McCain had been a lieutenant in the 11th Indiana Infantry Regiment, and he had received a battlefield commission at the Battle of Five Forks just before the end of the war.[3] Having previously been a homesteader, McCain buys a ranch outside the fictitious town of North Fork, New Mexico Territory, in the pilot episode. He and his son Mark had come from Enid, Oklahoma, after his wife died, when Mark was 6 years old.

 

 

 

R is for The Rockford Files:

The Rockford Files is an American television drama series starring James Garner that aired on the NBC network between September 13, 1974, and January 10, 1980, and has remained in syndication to the present day. Garner portrays Los Angeles-based private investigator Jim Rockford with Noah Beery, Jr., in the supporting role of his father, a retired truck driver nicknamed “Rocky”.

The show was created by Roy Huggins and Stephen J. Cannell. Huggins created the television show Maverick (1957–1962), which starred Garner, and he wanted to recapture that magic in a “modern day” detective setting. He teamed with Cannell, who had written for Jack Webb productions such as Adam-12 and Chase (1973–1974, NBC), to create The Rockford Files.

The series theme music by composers Mike Post and Pete Carpenter was released as a single and went to #10 on the Billboard Hot 100, remaining on the chart for 16 weeks and won a Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Arrangement for 1975.

Producers Roy Huggins and Stephen J. Cannell devised the Rockford character as a rather significant departure from typical television detectives of the time, essentially Bret Maverick as a modern detective.[6] Rockford had served time in California’s San Quentin Prison in the 1960s due to a wrongful conviction. After five years, he was pardoned. His infrequent jobs as a private investigator barely allow him to maintain his dilapidated mobile home (which doubles as his office) in a parking lot on the beaches of Malibu, California.

In contrast to most television private eyes, Rockford wears low-budget “off the rack” clothing and does his best to avoid fights. He rarely carries his Colt Detective Special revolver, for which he has no permit, preferring to talk his way out of trouble. He works on cold cases, missing persons investigations, and low-budget insurance scams, and repeatedly states that he does not handle “open cases” to avoid trouble with the police; he has been a P.I since 1968; his usual fee is $200.00 per day plus expenses.

Here’s an extended Intro theme song of The Rockford Files:

 

 

R is for The Rookies:

The Rookies is an American crime drama series that aired on ABC from 1972 until 1976. It follows the exploits of three rookie police officers working in an unidentified city for the fictitious Southern California Police Department (SCPD).

The series began as an ABC Movie of the Week airing on March 7, 1972, which also served as the pilot for the series.

The success of Joseph Wambaugh’s book, The New Centurions, as well as NBC’s ratings success with Adam-12, had sparked interest at the time in a more realistic depiction and storytelling of the typical uniformed police officer. Although various incidents during the late 1960s and early 1970s, particularly in California, had sparked controversy and negative feelings towards police officers in general, The Rookies tried to better humanize the character of a police officer and show the struggles that new, younger men and women (who were often Vietnam-era military veterans and/or college graduates) faced in their lives as law enforcement persons sworn to serve and protect the public.

The TV showfeatures five rookies newly arrived at a police academy in southern California: cadets Jared Whitman (Robert F. Lyons), Kevin Lassiter (Jeff Pomerantz), Mike Danko (Sam Melville), William “Willie” Gillis (Michael Ontkean), and Terry Webster (Georg Stanford Brown), all coming from different backgrounds including the military, college, and social work. The cadets’ training sergeant was Eddie Ryker, played by Darren McGavin. (In the series, Sgt. Ryker had been recently promoted to lieutenant and was played by Gerald S. O’Loughlin.) The character of Jill Danko also appeared in the movie pilot, but was played by another actress, Jennifer Billingsley, and the part was recast for the series with Kate Jackson as Jill Danko, a registered nurse.

Synopsis

The Rookies TV series centers around three rookie officers, Danko, Webster, and Gillis, and their superior officer/mentor, Lieutenant Ryker. The show was produced by Aaron Spelling and Leonard Goldberg. Each episode showcased highly dramatized versions of police cases and activities, often intertwined with the off-duty lives of the officers and their significant others. Mike Danko was the only rookie in the series who was married. Although filmed in and around Los Angeles, the actual setting of the show was kept deliberately vague, and, in a TV Guide article about the show, “SCPD” was said to stand for “Southern California Police Department.”

 

 

R is for Rocky & Bullwinkle:

The Rocky & Bullwinkle Show (known as Rocky & His Friends during the first two seasons and as The Bullwinkle Show for the last three seasons) is an American animated television series that originally aired from November 19, 1959, to June 27, 1964, on the ABC and NBC television networks. Produced by Jay Ward Productions, the series is structured as a variety show, with the main feature being the serialized adventures of the two title characters, the anthropomorphic moose Bullwinkle and flying squirrel Rocky. The main adversaries in most of their adventures are the Russian-like spies Boris Badenov and Natasha Fatale. Supporting segments include Dudley Do-Right (a parody of old-time melodrama), Peabody’s Improbable History (a dog and his pet boy Sherman traveling through time), and Fractured Fairy Tales (classic fairy tales retold in comic fashion), among others.

Rocky & Bullwinkle is known for quality writing and wry humor. Mixing puns, cultural and topical satire, and self-referential humor, it appealed to adults as well as children. It was also one of the first cartoons whose animation was outsourced; storyboards were shipped to Gamma Productions, a Mexican studio also employed by Total Television. The art has a choppy, unpolished look and the animation is extremely limited even by television animation standards at the time. Yet the series has long been held in high esteem by those who have seen it; some critics described the series as a well-written radio program with pictures.

Rocky and Bullwinkle

The lead characters and heroes of the series were Rocket “Rocky” J. Squirrel, a flying squirrel, and his best friend Bullwinkle J. Moose, a dim-witted but good-natured moose. Both characters lived in the fictional town of Frostbite Falls, Minnesota, which was based on the real life city of International Falls, Minnesota. The scheming villains in most episodes were the fiendish, but inept, agents of the fictitious nation of Pottsylvania: Boris Badenov, a pun on Boris Godunov, and Natasha Fatale, a pun on femme fatale. Boris and Natasha were commanded by the sinister Mr. Big and Fearless Leader. Other characters included Gidney & Cloyd, little green men from the moon who were armed with scrooch guns; Captain Peter “Wrongway” Peachfuzz, the captain of the S.S. Andalusia; and the inevitable onlookers, Edgar and Chauncy

 

Did you ever watch these shows? Can you think of any other shows that should be here? What are your favorite TV shows, past and present?

 

 

 

Advertisements

48 thoughts on “R is for Room 222, Rhoda, The Rifleman, The Rockford Files, The Rookies and Rocky & Bullwinkle #atozchallenge

  1. I remember Rhoda and The Rockford Files – have to admit I never really liked the second one. I think maybe I just didn’t get it :). Haven’t heard of Rookies. Hmmm, favourite R shows – Roswell was a good one from the 00s and Rosemary and Thyme was a lovely mystery series from then too. Ooh and Robin of Sherwood – I was addicted to that in the 80s. We asked out mother to pick up the album from the show for us, unfortunately she came back with Bob Marley, Legend, rather than Clannad, Legend 🙂
    Tasha
    Tasha’s Thinkings | Wittegen Press | FB3X (AC)

    Like

  2. Hi, Michele!

    I am familiar with all of these R series and watched them, some more regularly than others. I watched Room 222 occasionally. Mrs Shady #1 was named Karen and she and I agreed that she bore a resemblance to 222 star Karen Valentine. I remember how Ms Valentine showed up in many different television shows in the late 60s and 70s. I started following the Rhoda character on The Mary Tyler Moore Show which I watched regularly. I didn’t watch Rhoda quite as often. It’s sad to know that Valerie Harper is stricken with serious health problems these days. My dad likeed westerns more than I did and together we watched The Rifleman every week. I also watched Chuck’s later series Branded (1965-66) and I bought 45 rpm records released by Johnny Crawford in his attempt to branch out and establish a singing career. I didn’t watch Rockford or The Rookies regularly but I recall boyish faced Michael Ontkean who, like Karen Valentine, showed up in many other projects in the 70s and 80s including Making Love, a movie about a married man exploring his homosexuality. “Moose and Squirrel” was one of my favorite series. Unlike other cartoon shows of its time, Rocky and Bullwinkle boasted brilliant writing and humor and appealed to adults as well as mature, savvy children and teens.

    Thank you, dear friend Michele!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Good morning Shady. Thanks for stopping by. I loved Karen Valentine in Room 222. How cool that your first wife looked like her!
      I don’t remember the show Branded.
      Rhoda wasn’t as good as Mary Tyler Moore (the show) and I thought she was much more funny on MTM, but I still watched Rhoda faithfully.
      I never saw the movie Making Love. Will have to look that one up!

      Have a great day. My computer crashed the other day and is in the shop; going to pick it up today. Using my mom’s laptop now. It’s hard to use someone else’s computer and I can’t wait to get mine back!! Have a great day Shade…

      Like

    • I love James Garner too! He was so good in that role of Rockford. Funny that you didn’t realize Rockford was his name in the series. Lol.
      Thanks for stopping by…

      Like

    • Room 222 was a great show: think Boston Public in the 70s…
      Surely you watched Rocky & Bullwinkle 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by Guilie!

      Like

    • I need to rewatch some episodes to refamiliarize myself with it. I remember it being very clever…
      Thanks for coming by today Kathleen.

      Like

  3. I love the old “Rocky and Bullwinkle Show,” with “Peabody’s Improbable History” and my absolute favorite, “Fractured Fairy Tales.” I think occasionally “Aesop and Son” was part of the fun, too. It was funny when I was a kid and even funnier now.

    Chuck Connors is one of my favorite actors. Do you remember the episode of “The Adventures of Superman” where he played Sylvester J. Superman? It was a riot! “The Rifleman” is on MeTV… like I said, you have to demand that your cable company carry it.

    Was never much of a fan of “Room 222.” Karen Valentine was cute, though. Also not much of a fan of “The Rookies,” but Kate Jackson was on it… ’nuff said…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow, you sure know your Rocky & Bullwinkle! What fun!
      I don’t recall the Sylvester J. Superman episode. Chuck Connors was a great actor. Love him in The Rifleman.
      Lol on your reasons for watching Room 222 and The Rookies… Of course! 😉

      Like

  4. I still watch The Rifleman and it’s neat to see some stars from later shows like Michael Landon. I also always watched The Rockford files and loved it that he often got beaten up. I know that James Garner had trouble with his knees and also had heart issues. I can’t remember why but the cash and crew were off for a long time and James Garner paid them from his own money. He made it like a family. I always watched Ripley’s Believe it or not with Jack Palance.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ooo, I forgot about Ripleys Believe It or Not! That was a good show…
      Lol. Can’t believe you loved it when Rockford got beat up! I didn’t know that about James Garner paying the cast and crew. Must have been a strike or something…
      Cool trivia!

      Like

  5. I never watched any of these except for Rocky and Bullwinkle which I didn’t really understand until I was older and more aware of the world. Now on occasion I do watch reruns of The Rifleman on ME TV.

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Tossing It Out

    Liked by 1 person

    • Rocky & Bullwinkle were so adult! We didn’t get it back then but our parents sure did! Funny stuff. Would love to see the series now…
      Thanks for stopping by Lee.

      Like

  6. I’ve seen every one of these shows. Isn’t Rocky & Bullwinkle and the entire cast of characters the best cartoon show ever? 😀 The Rifleman was part of my early childhood obsession with Westerns. Loved James Garner from his Maverick days and comic western movies, so, Rockford was a natural, too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Rocky & Bullwinkle, plain and simple, rock! The writing was so good and so funny.
      Re: the Rifleman: I always loved to see him cocking that gun the way he did in the intro. I got into westerns because of my Dad. He LOVES westerns to this day.
      Rockford Files: such a great show! Love James Garner.

      Thanks for coming by Debbie. And thanks for the tweets! YOU rock! 🙂

      Like

  7. MICHELE ~
    I loved ‘The Rockford Files’, but ‘ROCKY & BULLWINKLE’ rule! I have every single episode on DVD. It was the first cartoon show really written for adults. I dug it as a kid, but it wasn’t until watching it as an adult did I realize I hadn’t really understood it as a child. About 90% of the jokes were going right over the heads of us kids back then.

    And maybe you don’t know this but on my blogs, when I use that gimmick of giving most blog bits TWO TITLES (“_____” Or, “_____”), I’m actually paying tribute to ‘ROCKY & BULLWINKLE’, because that’s how all their serialized episodes ended. There would be a cliffhanger ending, and then the narrator would say, “Tune in next time for “_____” or “_____”. And the titles were as witty as the jokes, puns, and wordplay in the show. As cartoons go, ‘R&B’ was genius stuffs! It’s STILL more clever than most of what’s on TV today.

    ~ D-FensDogG
    ‘Loyal American Underground’

    Liked by 1 person

    • I know, that’s so funny how adult the humor was in that cartoon! I think it’s so funny to go back and watch the episodes now. Brilliant! And so enjoyable!

      I didn’t know you were paying tribute to Rocky & Bullwinkle! That’s very cool.
      Thanks so much for stopping by Stephen. Good to see you here. 🙂

      Like

  8. I was just going to tell you that Stephen T. McCarthy is a big fan of Rocky & Bullwinkle, but I see he has told you himself!

    Not much into any of these. Newer Rs that have been cancelled: Revolution (I think that show was great in season one, took a turn in season 2, but could’ve straightened out in season 3 given the opportunity, which didn’t happen). Roswell was great in season one and then spiraled out in season 2, which turned into a deep dive season 3. Michael and Maria were consistently great, though. Everything and everyone else… meh.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I didn’t watch Revolution or Roswell. I don’t know why: there must have been something else on at the time they aired and I just wasn’t intrigued enough to record them. Although, some networks, I think, don’t adequately promote their series and then I end up missing them because I just don’t know about them.

      It’s too bad when a show starts out so good, but then quickly takes a turn for the worse. You get so invested and then disappointed quickly thereafter. Either that or they cancel a good show for some stupid reason. Network execs: sometimes make really dumb decisions…

      thanks for coming by today Robin!

      Like

      • I watched Revolution as well and agree with what Robin said about it. The last episode left us kind of hanging when it appeared that things might be going in an interesting direction.

        Arlee Bird
        A to Z Challenge Co-host
        Tossing It Out

        Liked by 1 person

        • That’s too bad. I think it’s a rip off to the loyal viewing audience to not wrap up the storyline. It’s all economics and bottom line that rules that world…

          Like

    • You sure right about that! Netflix has some great old shows…
      I clicked on your name to go to your blog but it says the site can’t be reached. Please comment back with your blog address so I can come visit you too.
      Thanks for stopping by!

      Like

  9. I watched everything but The Rifleman, but Rocky and Bullwinkle was my favorite. I quote from that show more than just about any other source! I’d watch it RIGHT NOW if it were on.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Really? I’d love to hear some of those quotes. It’s been so long…
      I too would love to see these cartoons again…

      Like

  10. Oh, HECK YEAH! R must have been my favorite letter. I loved Room 222 (and I never understood why it didn’t make it in syndication), my husband loved The Rockford Files (grooving to the title song right now) and – Rocky and Bullwinkle? Both of us loved that series – we even have some on DVD.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Loved Room 222!! It was kinda like Boston Public, a show which I also really enjoyed. So cool that you have Rocky & Bullwinkle on DVD! I need to see that cartoon again! Thanks for stopping by!

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s